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Well ,Every Dog has its Day , and today people its mine
CAT well this three letter word has become more of an over hyped phenomenon ( truly just in my honest opinion ) . My tryst with destiny began ages ago in 2005 the first year i gave CAT. Yes i did the usual things , i went to IMS , I gave the mocks , I was never bad , but I dare say I was also never great ,if there was one thing that got me 99+ percentiles it was verbal . Well as I said I did the usual things , with the exception that things with the sort of unusual person I am , dont always stay very usual. I lost my mind in between and started believing DI would be my nemesis , I was horribily bad at calculation based DI though logic was my strength. On CAT day the IIMs seemed to have guessed my aptitude and 2005 was the year when the pattern for DI changed completely and CAT DI became less calculation based and more logic based , I got a 97+ in DI and a 92 overall.
I had a job from campus ( A Chinese product based company ) , with a Chinese way of life. I did my internship and started working with them , my days and nights comprised of one thing code , code and more code ( for the uninitiated , code , is an abstruce language developed by human beings to keep themselves busy and occupied on lifeless but more intelligent forms of machinery(popularly known as computers) ) . Anyway , never gave CAT 2006 , while two of my best friends got kickass percentiles and went to MDI and IIM C , one went on to win the Aditya birla scholarship . Well what is its relation to me , well you can imagine rock bottom that my self esteem hit at that point , in case you cant , well I really cant help you can I
That was that , I prepared (yes again for CAT 2007 ) , again the same story , I would sometimes wake up at 3:00 in the morning and wonder what the hell am I going to do . That was that , CAT 2007 was another disastor. I realised one thing PREPARATION IS NOT FOR ME. I realised (or rather was made to realise by some friends whom I am now indebted to) that on any given day , given paper I can solve the number of questions i need to clear the cutoffs in each section all I need is the right ATTITUDE. I got depressed and managed to move around like a zombie. To beat it I got one call and one reject from SP Jain , I had no idea what was wrong.
Hence come 2008 I gave the GRE applied for MS and decided to end this obsession with an arbitrary exam which lakhs of people give each year,I wanted to do a Post grad, have a university life, live in a different country, experience, make my life interesting. The dollar surged against the rupee , the world economy was tumultuous , and the rest as they say is history. But sometime in between Yours Truly decided to fill the CAT form ( by this time I was programmed to do so : ) ).
I attended horse riding classes at palace grounds , went to one of my friends places to vegetate, went to an NGO to work on weekends , filled MS apps when thousands of people were taking and analyzing the mocks, I was living my life .
On Sat November 16th I was thinking hard if i should bunk a horse riding class and waste 5 hours of my time to give an exam I have given twice. Finally I decided to go , my room mate was at the same center as mine and didn't know the location well , I said what the hell , I will go with her. Again ,The rest as they say is history. This year of all , I got calls from IIM B,L,K,S with a 98.73 (OA) and 94+ sectional in all. Yes the one year I did nothing except relax and not take it to heart.
I got a MS accept, I got a promotion at work, I converted my B and K calls ,though L was a straight reject and one of my funniest interviews, I resigned from work ,all in chronological order.
And guess what I got to know about both my calls and my convert at IIM B through PG.
People can make all the difference ...
I owe a pair of JOSE headphones (originally it was BOSE that i had promised but then what the heck 350 $ no chance), a pair of chaddis ( not the pink ones ) to my friends that I had promised if I get through B.
For me this line sums it up ...
"A moment comes, which comes but rarely in history, when we step out from the old to the new, when an age ends, and when the soul of a nation, long supressed, finds utterance. "
One friend told me that we can never know the bigger scheme of things , and maybe even if we did we would never change it, though we think we would. Chew on it. Read about chaos theory, read albert camus, read marcel proust, Maybe the universe is meant to be in a state of chaos and any attempt to bring it to order is futile.
Cheers and God bless !
i am deletinmg this post..sorrry
I guess I can lay claim ...to writing here ... although I am gonna Join XLRI.
The day I could not get into IIT's and my claim to do so ...after dropping one year..( as is the usual fare in Bihar ...my native place) ..was successfully vetoed by my family ....
I had to get into IIM's ...That is the freaking way my mind perceives things!!
(I still maintain...that I was and am good enough for both the institutions( as so many of fellow puys and my peers are) ...People ..the way I see it is that.. this country of ours ...has such a large talent pool ...that we cannot afford to ..give IIx education to all the deserving people...so ...D day matters ...and a section of people get in ...and the rest ..are left ..back ...to pay ..what I call the "cost" that the bearers ...of a "developing" nation have to pay .. I am not complaining .. I love India.)
Well.. joined ..NIT Surathkal.(engg folks ..know about this better than "good" college )..after a fair enough performance in AIEEE 2004.
Turned out to be best decision of my life till date.
All other great things like ...an international size swimming pool, a private college beach ...a cosmopolitan culture ..and awesome placements apart ...this college is the best ..launching pad for higher studies. Consider this .. of my class of 34 students ...passing out ....15 straightaway went for MS in USA/Canada etc.
So after ... reading novels .... playing CS .. wasting time for 3 years in college ... CAT 2007 was in sight ...and I was damn confident.
Gave some initial mocks...and all.. performed very well...and worked really hard ...like practised and all....
My college has a history kind of ..of sending 12-15 people to IIM's every year ...and all my friends believed I would also ...get in .
The biggest mistake around this time that I did was ... ignored ..my almost ...constant failure to ...cross sectional percentiles ..in any one section ...throughout the mocks season ..!!!
I thought ...ek din ki baat hai ..it will come good on the good day !!
I used to get good enough overall scores( 99 +- 0.1 percentiles ) ...so that was also fair enough!!
Screwed up DI in CAT 2008 big time. And it was the easiest section.
percentile : 96.57
I never got less than ..98.5 in mocks... but i was disappointed ...only with myself !!
I remember my Mom said to me the day results were out ...only this much ..
Does it matter ?? You know ..that you are good enough ...I know that you are good enough ?? Your friends know that ?? what else ?? How many times they will refuse ?? you have 4 months of final year ..enjoy karo "
I tried to forget ....enjoyed my last few days in college to the limit ...went home before joining my company.
It was around July 2008. CAT was again back to my mind. Still I did nothing. I dint want to overwork...I had a fair idea of things ...I was not so to say " weak" in any of the sections ..like ...none of the sections were like pulling me down ...I knew it was the day that mattered !!
So around August .. I joined ...IMS ..(decide to change ..it was...TIME in college) ... decent enough i felt .. but felt like more practice... So took Career launcher ...also..on saturday ... I must thank my two flatmates ...they r friends bk from college ...and they joined with me ..!!
IMS gives a good all around ... competition ...and Carrer Launcher's individual questions are really good.....sometime CL goofs up on setting a nice paper overall...too tough or too easy ...!!
Was performing well ....never below 98.5 .. in the later stages ...also ...came in below AIR 100 also many times.
I also realised three things :
1. Any student, however brilliant and balanced HAS to surrender himself to the demands of the exam pattern in front of him. You just cant be egoistic and hard headed.
2. Self analysis is the key. You can't survive such immense competition if you dont understand how does your mind behaves during a test. When does it need rest ?? When should you stop attempting a DI set ...and go back to a chilled out VA questions ?? Things like that !!
3. Accuracy In Quant and DI is the key. It serves you immensely if you can get the feel of balancing your attempts and their accuracy as per the needs of the paper ! Period !!
just went and gave CAT 2008. I knew as soon as I came out ki ...I had screwed it up ...As a principle, I never check my scores with online results and all...But pata tha ki ...Quant was screwed up ...again the easiest one !!
Had a call from IIFT meanwhile ... but heart was not there ... would not have joined even ...if I had got it..at least this year !!
So went home ...10 days .. came back ...Lots of work in office .. dint touch pen for one month ..till XAT ...4th Jan ..
Decided on 3rd jan after seeing last year's actual XAT paper of mine ..
Only one strategy ... forget it was XAT ... Convert XAT to CAT .. ignore all special types of questions ....choose CAT tyoe questions and solve them !!
The minute I came outta XAT, i knew ...it was good ....I would surely get a call!!
Finally got ...99.7
My mom was happier than I was ...hehe ...coz she had seen ...that ..I had screwed up quant again !! I just kept telling her .ki ..mummy ..luck bhi chahiye ...kaafi logon ke saath hota hai !! Its a one-day thing !!
Interviews...and all...no special preparation..
rejects from IIFT .. expected ... very bad interview ...because I was brutally honest ..all throughout the intrvw.
FMS .. god only knos ..why they rejected me .. 99.75 .. and a good gd/PI ...
xlri .. CONVERTED ...jOINING ..NTHNG SPECIAL ...they asked me ..some different questions ..which I could manage !!
Not IIM's but XLRI ..Fair deal ...considering ...how unlucky ..you can be ...on the basis ...of 3 hrs .. or ..one bad day at GD/ PI.
Pagalguy .. has been awesome throughout
.. I cant thank ....puys enough !!
The net result is
" Always ask yourself ...Do you want it that bad ??? "
"it" always listens and responds !!
The emotion that I attach with this thread cannot be put in words. Finally, the time has come for me to become the part of a legacy, and I have become a part of it with a bang! My first post will be just about my failures in the three CATs I gave earlier - its only through the failures does one gain motivation to succeed. It all started in 2004.
After having been placed in an MNC (I was in final year then), a friend of mine at IIT Kharagpur informed me of this discount available on Mocks by TIME. I was in no interest to do an MBA at that point of time, but my friend just convinced me to join the test series. I gave tests with a complete lack of seriousness - I didn't even used to look at the papers after coming back from test. I used to score in 80-90 range in the mocks - not that I cared, I just gave them to boost my ego. Had to go to Calcutta to give CAT - the pattern had changed. 123 questions in all, with differential marking. I started with Quant and was taking my own sweet time, then went to VA, then in the end to DI. I had very less time left for DI and screwed it on a colossal scale.
The final result was 95.88 with Quant and VA in 96s and DI 82 odd. Anyway, I forgot about CAT for a lot of time after that, and started working my ass off on my B.Tech project (mostly an IT project based on Java). I tried to increase my CG, and managed to make it 8.42 by the end of my degree. Later joined the MNC and was put in Mainframes. I just hated Mainframes as it was so outdated, but yet continued working in the MNC so that it doesn't leave a blot on my resume. Even the thought of CAT didn't appear in my mind, so didn't give CAT 2005
Around August, I quit IBM and I joined a mid-sized product company with primarliy telecom companies as clients. The work environment changed for good and was much more informal than the suffocation I faced in the MNC. This is the time I met two of my colleagues who were preparing for CAT and giving the Mocks. But still, I wasn't really "ready" for an MBA - just kept up with business as usual, but convinced by room-mates to give CAT just for the heck of it. I remember trying to solve a very hard DI set from an AIMCAT paper with my friend the day before the exam. That was the only preparation I did for the exam. Went to exam hall and saw that QA was a piece of cake. But lack of preparation led to me taking quite a lot of time - did it for 1 hr. Then came VA - it was the most arbit VA paper that I ever saw. My reading speed was pathetic then and I took my own time solving the paper - but the time I spent in office reading wikipedia articles did help me a bit. Again 1hr gone. 1/2 hr left for DI. The time I came to DI, it was literally a blackout - I had not practiced even a bit, and everyone knows how important practice is for DI. As I had to do it fast, I wasn't actually confident of even one question. I knew that I won't be able to clear DI cutoff anyway. The results came - Overall 96.xx, QA was 99.8x, VA was 99.3x (given that VA had been the the nemesis of many, this was a welcome development) and DI was 10.xx! (I actually scored ZERO in DI). I didn't feel so bad as I didn't prepare at all, but I thought of it as a lost oppurtunity as QA was not going to be as easy as it was in this CAT anymore. But then I was getting into the "MBA mode" - my work at office actually helped in realize the need for an MBA to boost my career.
I had caught up with my work at office, and was recognized by everyone for my contributions. Working in a mid-sized company gave lot of responsibility and independence to me with respect to my work. So I caught on with work, and was fairly busy everytime. The mock season came and I joined the TIME series. But I still repeated the same mistakes that I did back in college. I didn't use to do enough practice and nothing apart from a quick perusal of the mock paper after coming back. My scores always used to range in the 90s (the highest it once touched was 98 something). Apart fromt that work in the office was getting hectic. So at some point of time, I completely lost touch and there began a downward spiral in my scores. That led to a greater loss in confidence and quickly started losing hope. I clearly lacked information on those CAT crackers who had scored really less in their mocks. In short, I really missed pagalguy - although I had an id here, I rarely used to visit, mostly to post just my mock scores. CAT came and went - amidst my hectic work. I had a hard time convincing my manager for taking a leave on the Saturday before CAT. I was even thinking about my work stuff while writing CAT. My strategy was anyway screwed up. I attempted my weakest section - DI first - was able to score averagely there. Then moved on to verbal - I found it equally arbit, if not more, as 2006 - I took a full hr for this. I was left with just 45 mins for QA. Now the blackout had to happen with QA - I found it really tough - after not being able to solve 2-3 questions, pressure increased and I ended up making really bad mistakes. Anyway, result was worse than the last time - 95.xx with 89.xx in QA, 92.xx in VA, 89.xx in DI - I expected it. But I got a promotion at work and that kind of compensated for my grief of not cracking CAT.
After many attempts, I have finally been able to write this post. So here goes my story
I have never been an extraordinary student. I consider my self bright, but extremely lazy .Scored around 80% in 10th and 12th , with minimal efforts. Had a lucky day on AIEEE exam and managed to get into a decent engineering college. Managed to score 8.00 CGPA, thanks to the lenient marking system. Wasnt sure about what I wanted to do in life. Filled the CAT form, as all my friends were filling it. But one fine day, I saw one of my friends studying for the GATE, and decided to go for it. Filled the form, bought a book, only to realize that I could not handle so much of technical stuff. So, I ended up achieving new heights in computer gaming and sidelining the plans for higher education. Meanwhile, I managed to get 71%ile in CAT and 88%ile in GATE. Having no other option left, I joined an IT firm with the plan of working very hard and to become a geek (It sounds kewl). But destiny had other plans for me. I got a role where there was no work for me. Literally. In the first six months ,I hardly worked for a day or two. So I decided to give CAT another shot. Joined the TIME classes and started with vigor. But within two months, I had burned out. So, I spent the next six months going to the classes (Coz I had paid the fees) but making little efforts at home. But still I was quite optimistic of making it to a decent college. Managed 94%ile in CAT and calls from XLRI,SIBM,SCMHRD,XIMB. I was so confident of converting at least one of these that I didnt even prepare for the GDPI. The result : rejection from all. Meanwhile, some of my friends, who had performed no better than me in the mocks, have converted IIM calls.
I now feel happy that I have been rejected from these colleges. At least I know what I can achieve and more importantly ,what I want to achieve. I will not live my whole life with the regret that , I could have done better".
I'm sharing with all of you advise that I got from someone who's well placed in the industry....... I had mailed him after my CAT and this is what he sent me, i feel there's enough wisdom in his words for it to be shared with all of you....
We are doing great and am sure same your end. Good to hear that you have cleared the CAT / will be clearing the CAT with good marks. I am also honoured that you have given me the priviledge to advice you in this moment of your career decision. That put the niceties to one side so we can get to hard facts .
Shoaib, it is very necessary in life that you decide what you want and when you want. You can have choices in a thread i.e this takes priority, if not this then this and the list goes on. But end of the day - You make your own choices based on a informed future oriented basis.
First the colleges - frankly what makes a difference is you. The better college gives you a 1 year head-start at the most. You need to decide what you want to do not do what is available. So what is your personality, temperament, aptitude and interest suited to. Analyze that - FAST. Pay packages do not matter (They have all dropped) (CTC is different from take home) (INR 10 lac CTC could give you 35-45K take home max - if lucky) - what matters is that do you have a good foundation in your subject of choice and more have you assimilated the theory and can you utilize it practically with common sense. Sounds Scary! But thats what separates the men from the boys and the butter from the buttermilk.
Good courses - top of line are - IIMs - Generalist / FMS - Marketing / XLRI - HR / MICA - Media / IIFT - Foreign trade. Then come MDI etc.
As regards studying overseas - once again what are your objectives in life. Live Life Kingsize overseas on DAD's MONEY! Shoaib, I may seem rough and rude but thats how you will get treated once in the real world. You need to build your foundations - yourself and then build your dreams. But dont forget to dream because if you dont you will not have a target in life and without that you will not have a sense of achievement.
(1) Reach Higher, Hit Harder, Grow faster. (2) Success seems to be connected to action, Successful people keep moving, They make mistakes but never quit. (3) Your attitude makes altitude and lastly and the most important (4) "I CAN, I WILL".
Do a SWOT on yourself. Identify your core points - positive and negative. Identify your personality, temperment, aptitude and interest. FAST. Then select the course you wish to do. Where does not matter other than a ego issue. You do not see too many IIM guys heading successful organisations. Why, What happened. What has happend to the high flyers with super pay pack at start up. How come they did not get successful finally. So keep a gap to grow. Plan. Stragically and most importent IMPLEMENT.
Shoaib, all this sounds rough and bad. But " The rocky path you will tread on now will lead you to the rainbow" provided you keep your head on your shoulders and feet on the ground.
Wish you all the best and success. Any query to email in and I will be glad to advice within my limited knowledge of courses gone past. Take care and I await your reply.
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